Louis Couperin


Born: 1626; Chaumes, France   Died: August 29, 1661; Paris, France  
The Couperin family resembles, in many ways, the Bach family, though on a smaller scale: several generations of Couperins were important figures in the history of French music. Louis Couperin was the uncle to perhaps the best-known member of the Couperin family, François, also known as François le Grand. Louis was the son of Charles Couperin, organist of Chaume, and brother to Charles, also a successful organist and father to François. Read more

Very little is known about the early years of Louis' life, other than that he must have received excellent musical training (probably from Chambonnières), for he became an overnight success when he finally arrived in Paris around 1651. Once in Paris, he secured a job as an organist at St. Gervais and also played treble viol in the royal chapel. He was a well-known and well-respected musician in Paris, and was closely connected to many of the most important musicians in the city.

Aproximately 215 of Couperin's works survive today, although it is very likely that he composed many more. Most of his compositions are works for keyboard, and indeed Couperin is considered one of the greatest French keyboard composers of the seventeenth century. His oeuvre includes a great deal of music for organ, including a number of fugues, as well as music for the harpsichord. Couperin's harpsichord music has generated the most interest over the centuries: comprised largely of short dance pieces -- allemandes, courantes, gigues, sarabandes, etc. -- the harpsichord music is remarkable for its intensity and sudden harmonic, rhythmic, and melodic gestures.

Some scholars have suggested that Couperin was one of the first French harpsichord composers to adopt the new basso continuo style; others have noted that his style changed from medium to medium, so that the violin music, the organ music, and the harpsichord music each reveal a different facet of the same fertile musical imagination. Read less

There are 73 Louis Couperin recordings available.

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Louis Couperin

I. 101. Allemande L'Amiable
II. 102. La Piémontoise
III. 105. Courante La Mignonne
IV. 108. Sarabande
V. 110. Sarabande
VI. 111. Menuet de Poitou et son Double
I. 11. Prélude
II. 126. Allemande Le Moutier (Chambonnières). Double (Couperin)
III. 17. Courante
IV. 19. Courante
V. 21. Sarabande
VI. 22. Sarabande
VII. 24. Sarabande
VIII. 27. Passacaille
I. 36. Allemande
II. 39. Courante
III. 40. Courante
IV. 41. Courante
V. 48. Sarabande
VI. 49. Sarabande
VII. 50. Sarabande
VIII. 56. Sarabande
IX. 51. Sarabande
X. 124. Gavotte
XI. 122. Gigue
XII. 54. La Pastourelle
XIII. 55. Chaconne
I. 13. Prélude
II. 67. Allemande grave
III. 68. Courante
IV. 69. Courante
V. 70. Courante
VI. 72. Sarabande
VII. 75. Sarabande
VIII. 76. Gigue
IX. 80. Chaconne
X. 81. Tombeau de M. Blancrocher
I. 83. Allemande
II. 90. Courante
III. 91. Courante
IV. 92. Courante
V. 88. Gaillarde
I. 3. Prélude
II. 97. Sarabande
III. 98. Passacaille
I. Prelude a l´imitation de Mr Froberger
II. Allemande l´Amiable
III. Courante La Mignone
V. Sarabande
VI. La Piemontoise
I. 118. Allemande
II. 119. Courante
I. 115. Allemande
II. 116. Courante
III. 117. Sarabande
I. Prelude
II. Allemande
III. Courante
IV. Sarabande
V. Passacaille
I. Prelude
II. Allemande
III. Courante
IV. Sarabande
V. Gaillarde
VI. Chaconne
I. 1. Prélude
II. 35. Allemande
III. 37. Pièces de trois sortes de mouvements
IV. 38. Courante
V. 42. Courante
VI. 43. Courante
VII. 44. Sarabande
VIII. 45. Sarabande
IX. 46. Sarabande
X. 47. Sarabande en canon
XI. 52. Canaries
XII. 53. Volte
XIII. 57. Chaconne La Complaignante
I. Prelude
II. Allemande
III. Courante
IV. Sarabande
I. 12. Prélude
II. 66. Allemande
III. 71. Courante
IV. 74. Sarabande
V. 73. Branle de Basque
VI. 77. Gaillarde
VII. 79. Gigue
VIII. 78. Chaconne
I. 129. Prélude
II. 82. Allemande
III. 84. Courante
IV. 85. Courante
V. 86. Courante
VI. 87. Sarabande
VII. 89. Chaconne
I. 4. Prélude
II. 93. Allemande
III. 94. Courante
IV. 95. Sarabande
V. 96. Chaconne ou Passacaille

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